News, music, movies & restaurants from the editors of the Silicon Valley's #1 weekly newspaper.
Serving San Jose, Palo Alto, Los Gatos, Campbell, Sunnyvale, Mountain View, Fremont & nearby cities.

RestaurantsNorth Bay

home | restaurants | North Bay

Restaurant Reviews

Photo Ad Hoc
6476 Washington St., Yountville. Dinner only Thu.-Mon. $10 corkage. 707.944.2487.

Photo Barefoot Cafe
Cafe. 1900 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Fairfax. Open 7am to 10pm daily. 415.460.2160.

Photo Romeo's Pizza & Pasta
Pizza. East Petaluma: 701 Sonoma Mt. Pkwy., Ste. E2 (in the G&G strip mall), 707.762.6668; west Petaluma: 35 E. Washington St., Ste. A (across from the Golden Eagle shopping center), 707.762.6669. Open for lunch, dinner and takeout daily.

Photo Finnegan's Marin
Irish pub. 877 Grant Ave., Novato. Open for lunch and dinner daily. 415.225.7495.

Photo Buckeye Roadhouse
Roadhouse. 15 Shoreline Hwy., Mill Valley. Open for lunch and dinner daily; Sunday brunch from 10:30am. 415.331.2600.

Photo Wine Spectrum Shop & Bar
Wine store. 123 Fourth St., Santa Rosa. Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday-Sunday; until midnight, Wednesday-Saturday. 707.636.1064.

Photo Boca
Steakhouse. 340 Ignacio Blvd., Novato. Open for dinner daily; lunch, Monday-Friday. 415.883.0901.

Photo Hatam Persian Grocery & Restaurant
Persian. 821 B St., San Rafael. Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday-Sunday. 415.454.8888.

Photo Simply Delicious
Bistro. 2780 Stony Point Road, Santa Rosa. Lunch and dinner served daily. 707.579.2083.

Photo Hot Tamales
Mexican. 3020-F Santa Rosa Ave., Santa Rosa. Open 10am to 10pm every day. Dine in or take out; free delivery. 707.568.1241.

Photo Rubix Restaurant
Bistro. Located in the remodeled former Fourth Street home of Cafe des Croissants. 1226 Fourth St., Santa Rosa. Open Tuesday-Sunday. Lunch and dinner during the week; breakfast and dinner on weekends. 707.569.8222.

Photo La Fondita
Mexican. Simple, straightforward Mexican food with clear, layered flavors. 816 Sebastopol Road at West Avenue, Santa Rosa. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 707.526.0881.

Photo Thai Hut Valley
Thai. An organic alternative for Thai food lovers. 8492 Gravenstein Hwy., Cotati. Open for lunch and dinner, Monday-Saturday, 11am to 9pm. 707.665.0186.

Photo Zaré
Mediterranean. A collection of California-Mediterranean dishes, boosted by the occasional nod to Zaré's Persian heritage. 5091 Solano Ave., Napa. Lunch and dinner served daily; bar closes at 11pm. 707.257.3318.

Photo Boonfly Cafe
California. A breathtaking, neo-industrial environment. The food is anything but industrial, and while many of the dishes appear on restaurant menus all across Sonoma, Marin and Napa counties, they look different and taste different. 4080 Sonoma Hwy., Napa. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner, 7am to 10pm. 707.299.4900.

Photo Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen
New American. This charming restaurant, located in a vintage two-story house off of St. Helena's bustling main drag, specializes in chef Cindy Pawlcyn's self-described 'food of the Americas.' And pssst: the burgers rock. Celebrity bartenders pour every Thursday evening through June. 1327 Railroad Ave., St. Helena. Summer hours are now on! Lunch and dinner daily, 11:30am to 10pm. 707.963.1200.

Photo 154
Vietnamese. Tasteful decor and fine pho inform Petaluma's newest Vietnamese restaurant. Don't miss the subtly flavored rice crepe, the pho beef noodle soup and the imperial rolls. Open for lunch and dinner daily. 154 Petaluma Blvd. N., Petaluma.

Photo Fujiya
Japanese. The menu bulges with sushi, nigiri and cooked Japanese food choices. 921 Factory Stores Drive, Napa. Lunch and dinner, Tuesday through Sunday. 707.257.0639.

Photo Sebastopol Brewing Company
Microbrewery. Microbrewery with great eats rejuvenates Sebastopol. 230 Petaluma Ave., Sebastopol. Open for lunch and dinner, Tue-Sun. 707.823.7837.

Photo Cafe Zazzle
Cafe. Fresh flavors and international combinations are everything at Zazzle. 121 Kentucky St., Petaluma. Open for lunch and dinner Tues-Sun. 707.762.1700.

Photo Food Essay: California's Wine Country, Earthquakes and Volcanoes
Thousands of years ago, tectonics and terroir conspired to make fine wine.

Photo Interview: Christopher Saywer
Sommelier to the Sonoma Valley Film Festival.

Photo Whole Grains
Everything you always wanted to know but were afraid to ask.

Photo Cutting the Mustard
In which we learn an unusual amount about one certain condiment.

Photo Bud's Custom Meats
Matt Pamatmat hosts a meat-off of far-ranging proportions.

Recipe For Retribution
Sara Bir resolves to spread her chocolate cake recipe across the nation.

News of the Food
Nibble, savor, sip at Artisan Market.

The Gotta-Try-It Diet
When it comes to slimmer waistlines, is Sonoma the new South Beach?

Real-Life Kitchen
Holy Haloumi.

Like Water for Chocolate?
The shocking truth about red wine and chocolate: They don't mix.

Follini & Eichenbaum Cafe in Sonoma.

Real-Life Kitchen
Chocolate cookbooks for Valentine's Day.

To Market, to Market
Launching a new food product isn't easy, but LaLoo's Goat's Milk Ice Cream is beating the odds one flavor at a time.

News of the Food
Yeasty Chili?--Whey!

Zen of Olives
Don Landis loves his olives, and that's no lye.

News of the Food
I'd Like to Buy the World a Coca.

Back in Flour
Atkins is dead, long live the carb.

Real-Life Kitchen
Nine Simple Ways to Be a Better Cook.

Photo Doin' the Laundry
Reflections on eating an epic meal at one of the world's best restaurants.

Eating Her Words
One writer takes New Year's resolutions to . . . stomach?

Wonton Christmas
Water chestnuts roasting on an open fire: where to eat Chinese on Christmas.

News of the Food
Making Merry.

The Myth of Bread
Brick-oven builder Alan Scott understands the yeasty secrets.

News of the Food
A select guide to North Bay restaurants that stay open for Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.

World-Class Winemaking
'Wine Spectator' Top 100 has the North Bay written all over it.

Real-Life Kitchen
Presto Pesto.

Sweet 'n' Power
Dessert wines can make a rare match with the meal.

Cook It!
Joy of Italian Cooking.

The Great Pumpkin Pie-Off
Does fresh pumpkin really make a difference in a pie?

Chicken Delight
Technique and timing secret to panéed bird.

Surviving the Holidays.

Real-Life Kitchen
Consider the Oysters.

Young Dead Grape
Beaujolais Nouveau, rushed off the vine and down our gullets.

Canstruction Zone
Can-do art and attitude aims at stemming hunger.

News of the Food
Fall Fruiting.

Lowly Chow Goes Highbrow
Ingredients once considered low-class make a big splash in fine dining.

News of the Food
Chef Hopping.

Real-Life Kitchen

Meat in Costume
Colored Cheez Whiz has nothing over jellied tongue on Halloween.

News of the Food
Unnatural Bedfellows.

The Gin and Tonic Index
Fending off malaria, scurvy and nasty bartenders one drink at a time.

Apple Crazy
In search of the perfect apple dessert, no matter what.

Source and Intention
How love, honor, passion and charity make for a damned fine meal.

News of the Food
Food Fight.

Shaking It Up
Salt, always necessary, is now also cool.

Cult of TJ's
The blessings--and the curse--of Trader Joe's.

News of the Food
Preparing to Prepare.

Cheese Whiz
Clark Wolf, good gossip, artisanal guilds and the stuff of life.

Loving the Love Apple
The names! Colors! Shapes! Flavors! In praise of heirlooms.

News of the Food

Biodynamic Berries
Ancient ways are the next step in organic winemaking.

Much-Maligned Merlot
Getting it straight about 'Sideways' bashing.

News of the Food
Zucch Allures!

Crank It Up
What's better than ice cream? Homemade ice cream!

Eat Here Now
Connecting with the lettuce next door.

News of the Food
Short Stack.

Chew on This
Animal Instincts.

The Philosophy of Products
Surrealism is alive and well in the aisles of North Bay discount supermarkets.

Positive Aspics.

As the Creek Dries
The true 'n' tawdry tale of a four-star server.

Eating Out, In
I want that! Home recipes of pro chefs.

Arcadia Wineries
Swirl 'n' spit your way through wine country in more adventurous ways.

Wild Spirits
Dessert wines find a port of ease.

In the Weeds
Hard and cooking slow make life complete at Zazu.

Blackberry Summer
Oh, the idyll of standing in the bushes by the side of the road!

News of the Food
Mexico Without Mexican Food.

News of the Food
Little Sprinklings.

Betty's Buddy
Only the courageous Sara Bir could possibly want to spend an entire week with Betty Crocker, cooking exclusively from her 1962 guide for the modern homemaker. Tuna puff casserole, oh my.

Soul Food
Considering the heart of the family, straight from the Eastern reaches of the Mediterranean.

News of the Food
What's for Dinner?

News of the Food
Hungry and Hungrier.

Secret Napa
An insider's guide to living la dolce Napa.

Cook It
Tastes Like Chicken.

News of the Food
Food for Man and Beast.

If it's June, it must be time to go out to dinner.

News of the Food
Bitter and Sweet.

Confessions of a Java Jockey
A day in the life of a barista.

News of the Food
Getting Real.

Got Offal?
Adventures in organ meats and other morsels.

News of the Food
Memorial Day Mentionables.

Cricket, Anyone?
The next big thing in bold, cold beverages--green tea cola?

News of the Food
Bounty of the Counties.

Forbidden Fromage
The raw and the cooked--lusting for illegal cheese.

News of the Food
Liquid Power.

By the Beautiful Sea
Thai restaurant is more bistro than Bangkok.

Cook It!
Mom's Meal.

News of the Food
Pyramid Schemes.

Spice of Life
Annual chili cook-off raises money and spirits.

News of the Food
All in the Pot.

Soul in the Desert
On water, God and cactus fruit.

News of the Food

Social Capital
Petaluma's literary pub crawl offers a novel way to get off the sofa and the soma.

Bistro Incognito
Underground restaurants serve up a slice of speakeasy--if you know where to find them.

Unabashed Pleasure
Annie, Get Your Dip.

News of the Food
Curd Crazy!

Good 'n' Sour Grapes
Terra Sonoma's verjus wisely strips the vine.

News of the Food
Water Fight.

Kitchen Gods
One writer remembers learning to lord it over the hearth.

Cook It
The Noblest Spears.

Eat Out More Often
In the spring, every person's fancy turns to picnics.

Cook It
Garlic and Wormwood.

News of the Food
Quest for Perfection.

Girls' night takes on a whole new meaning with soup.

News of the Food
Not So Sweet.

News of the Food
Secret Burgers.

Listen Up!
Winetasting do's and don'ts for Generation Next.

News of the Food
Bowl of Disaster.

Dessert Is for Lovers
Julia's Kitchen pastry whiz Nicole Plue wants you to share.

Wine Tasting Room of the Week
Tasting rooms made for lovers.

News of the Food

Cook It
Citrus Almond Torte.

Food for Thought
'What the World Eats' exhibit something to chew on.

Simply Sushi.

Taste Master
Chef Michael Chiarello defines the essence of the Napa Valley.

News of the Food
Oh! The Olio!

Swallow That
In which our wayward reporter eats an entire record album. Well, OK--it's just a 7-inch.

News of the Food
Feeling Crabby.

Lean Cuisine
With the holidays finished, January looks like ham and beans.

Wine Tasting Room of the Week
The Smart Drinkers' Tour of Winter Wineland.

Food for Thought
Old World, New World.

Is there any chance that the Democratic Party might find its backbone again?

How Now, Mad Cow?
One year after the first case of mad cow disease in the U.S. was confirmed, promised food safety reforms have yet to be instituted. And they never will be, if the cattle industry has its way.

Bubbly Bargains
Add some sparkle to your season (and your wine).

Just Desserts
Surprise and delight friends and family with a special--OK, raw--cake this holiday.

Cook It!
Pass the Paté, Love.

Goose Grrrl
Learning to master the goose, grease and all.

News of the Food
Oh, Just Everything.

Hail to the Food
Bite-Size Elegance.

Table of Earthly Delights
Eating your way through the North Bay.

Grill Seeker
How George Foreman, Bobby Flay and Ted Nugent taught me to be a real (suburban) man.

Sunnyside Up
Cheap eats you've got to drive to imbibe.

Flopping Fresh
Attack of the 50-foot squid sandwich and other fish tales.

Talking Turkey
Stalking the restaurant holiday meal.

Italian State of Mind
New cookbooks showcased at Simi series.

Freezer Queen
Adventures in microwavable meals.

Season's Eatings
Rake in the flavors of fall with comfort-food cookbooks.

Season of Plenty
Fall foods from Harvest Fair to harvest table.

Minute Meals
Where have all the big plates gone? Napa's Wine Garden and other eateries make small the new big.

Travelin' Tummy
Eating your way to Bodega Bay (and back again).

Magic Mushrooms
That fungus among us is good for more than just eating.

Crumbs of Knowledge
Ben Schott's 'Miscellany' has everything you never needed to know about food and drink.

Totally Ripe
Love apple, wolf peach, heirloom--whatever you call it, a tomato is more than just a tomato.

How Does Your Vineyard Grow?
Medlock Ames and the making of a winery.

Triumph of the Strange
Antidote is a deconstructionist experiment of surrealist food--the best plate of dada you'll ever eat.

Chasing the Green Fairy
Absinthe, and perhaps its accompanying madness, is on the rise again.

Thursday Night Flight
Ten wines, one roll of paper towels, two really bored people.

Mouth Wandering
The ultimate resource to satisfying the North Bay's oral fixations.

Queen of Cups
Taylor Maid Farms' Trish Skeie makes some damn fine coffee.

Fessin' Up to the 'F' Word
Proud confessions of a foodie.

Ghee Whiz
Pamposh Indian restaurant is a jewel in the crown.

On the Town
Danny Sorentino chases the vibe on an all-night tour of his favorite local spots.

Fear of Frying
A gentler, kinder McDonald's wants to help you Go Active!

Mr. American Pie
Brother Peter discovers that pizza is as pizza does.

Third Time's a Charm
The buzz pays off at Monti's.

Sushi! Sushi! Sushi!
Wrapping raw fish in seaweed is just one way to float your boat.

Heart of Community
Sonoma's Center of the Universe Cafe is for all souls.

Baker's Dozen
Carbo-loading around the North Bay's sweetest spots.

Half-Shell Hero
Charles Diegel is Napa's barbecued-oyster king.

Cold Is Good
This time of year, we all scream.

Sipping Sisterhood
Ladies lead the charge of the flight brigade.

Beauty of Bounty
Pilar has an unwavering devotion to freshness.

The Great French Cooking Experiment
Sea Ranch author Andrew Todhunter's 'A Meal Observed' brings out the haute cuisine of the home.

Every Port on the Plate
Latitude is all over the map.

Wrap Star
Let us now sing the praises of cellophane.

Chasing Rabbit
Cacao, bunnies and resurrection: what's the connection?

Real Food Car Cultureolution
The girl, the fig and the mushroom man.

Home on the Range
Napa's Bounty Hunter feeds the Western imagination.

Going It Alone
Cabbage without the corned beef.

Date Night
Zazu passes the roadhouse road test.

Prudent Roots
Beets, the muddy little hearts of the earth.

The Atkins Diary
Ketosis psychosis and other dark secrets of the low-carb diet craze.

Winter Plates
The hunt for dark-days dinners.

Box of Love
The famed Whitman's Sampler is one solid pound of history.

An Immodest Proposal
If the EU gets its way, you could be sprinkling Parm!™ over your spaghetti. And that might not be a bad thing.

Libation Liberation
Wine 'geek' Leslie Sbrocco uncorks wine's mysteries for women.

We're All Going to Die!
(Or not.) Mad cow madness finally hits the U.S.A.

Blazing Guns, Setting Suns
Tex Wasabi's may be the strangest restaurant in the universe.

Ice-Cream Antisocial
Gonzo upstart Raymond Lai brings a new level of subversiveness to frozen confections.

Cheap Cheer
Dead grape that won't crush your wallet.

Embarrassment of Riches
The persimmon tragedy, a personal failure.

Cultural Exchange
Belle Arti makes a meal fit for the King.

Drinking in Knowledge
The Sonoma County Wine Library is a veritable cellar of information.

In From the Cold
Sassafras is a warm respite from bad office-park juju.

From Pen to Table
Turkeykind has experienced major changes over the past 50 years.

Savoring Seaweed
The Seaweed Cafe offers guests the royal treatment.

Cowboy Cuisine
Geyser Smokehouse appeals to the little buckaroo in all of us.

Mouth Wide Shut
Low carbs, high carbs, meat, no meat--perhaps the secret to health and happiness is not eating at all.

The Art of Coffee
Santa Rosa's Ecco Caffé proves there's more to coffee than meets the eye (and nose).

Pub Defenders
How authentic is the North Bay's newest 'authentic' Irish pub? And, ahem, how authentic would we really want it to be?

Sweet Charity
Humanitas Wines cares not only where the grapes come from, but where they go.

Here's to Circus Peanuts, America's strangest candy for over 100 years.

Brannan's Grill hits and misses, but still impresses.

The unassumingly elegant surprise of Bistro Allure.

Home-baked Charm
Casual cafe food gets the white-glove treatment at Garden Court.

Angèle, Baby
Down by the river, Napa gets an infusion of France.

Mining for Watermelon Ore
The mysteries of watermelon molasses, revealed. Sort of.

On Tapas the World
Enjoy bright and airy Mediterranean days or nights at Sonoma's Cafe Andalusia.

Beating the Roadhouse Blues
Before wine country, there was Washoe House.

Marin Med
Cal-Mediterranean flights of fancy at Insalata's.

Hot Dog!
In search of an American classic.

What Chefs Really Eat
Do chefs hoard deep, disturbing food vices? It depends on whom you ask.

Wine Alive
Biodynamic wines, where flaws are welcomed and individuality is coveted.

Who's Cooking Now?
With the help of cooking schools, it could be you.

Life's Too Short
Michele Anna Jordan's philosophy involves eating well and living well.

Where's the Beef?
Who cares? At Chai BaBa Chai and Govinda's, we're dining out vegetarian!

It's So Easy Eating Green
Restaurants inch toward sustainability.

Love Goes Where Rosemary Grows
There's no need to pine for plentiful rosemary.

Automatic for the People
Taylor's Automatic Refresher, an oasis of burgerdom.

Special Delivery
Bistrot La Poste, a micro-Parisian district in Sonoma.

Our Daily Bread
Santa Rosa's Grindstone Bakery bakes naturally leavened, wheat-free loaves of note.

Liquid Refreshment
The makers of Topo Loco would like to serve up a cool beverage at your earliest convenience.

In the Valley of the Brew
In a welcome inversion of the brewpub equation, Ross Valley Brewing Company's food outdoes its beer.

The Good Neighbor Policy
Shopping Center Cuisine in Cotati.

Fire and Ice
Car camping on less than a $1,000 a week.

Standard of Excellence
Dazzled by cheese at the Farmhouse Inn.

The Fig Time
The Girl and the Fig and its lusty French fare come to Petaluma.

Something's Fishy
Seeking the lightest of fishes and chips.

Waves of Grain
Pasta on the plates, Las Vegas on the ceiling, and wheat stalks on the tables at Petaluma's Semolina.

Cake Walk
Jeremiah's Fine Foods makes a big thing out of something small.

Bugging Out
Mudbugs Cafe deftly bridges the gaps between bayou country and Marin County.

The Great White Fat
The long and the shortening of fats.

Bistro Aflame
Napa's Fumé Bistro hits the high marks of Wine Country excellence.

Bargain Booze
How to find a perfectly fine wine for under $10.

Long Live the King
The Pasta King, the Spaghetti Palace and his pasta kingdom.

Into the Underwood
How the bistro business, bobos, feng shui, and George Segal got to Graton.

Do-Nut Believe the Hype
A donut--even a great donut--ultimately is nothing but a donut.

Thai Treasure
Rin's Thai offers great food without the familiar decor.

They Go to Your Head
Simple, sophisticated, and romantic, champagne cocktails make the mundane marvelous.

Downtown Santa Rosa houses a hoard of trusty delis.

Hiro Worship
A new Japanese restaurant in Petaluma ups the ante.

Eastside Story
The other half of Petaluma gains a funky and family-friendly eatery with Rosen's Eastside Grill.

Treasure Chest
Winter is the time to rediscover chestnuts.

La Méthode North Bay
Eating well is its own reward.

West Pole Bakery now serves dinner, but for diners, it's safest to stick to the fruits of the oven.

It Takes a Gingerbread Village
Christmas is all about the cookies.

Let It Pho, Let It Pho, Let It Pho
The importance of beef noodle soup.

Baby Got Back
Confessions of a bacon addict.

Do Believe the Hype
Is Mirepoix really that good? Yeah!

Chicken Soup for the Tummy
Making chicken soup is as good for you as eating it.

I Do, I Do! Who wants to go to D's Diner?

The Waiting Game
Persimmons pay off for those who are patient.

Artful Eating
Art pros chew the fat on fall foods.


First Bite
Quick dining snapshots by Bohemian staffers.

Wine Tasting Room of the Week
Winery news and reviews.

News of the Food
Food-related comings and goings, openings and closings, and other essays for those who love the kitchen and what it produces.

Real-Life Kitchen
Recipes for food that you can actually make.